Thank you, Tim Clark

business company film

When I started BiteSite, I do what I always do when I start any project: I start to have grand visions of what the future would look like. I pictured a huge office with awesome furniture and gear, lots of employees, filming on big locations, and coding some of the best apps in the world. Now while some aspects of that have come true, we’re still a small startup with lots to achieve.

While we have hit some milestones we set out to hit, we still haven’t achieved others. For example, I pictured by now that we’d be in our own office or that we’d be shooting on RED cameras. But as time goes by, I start to realize more and more what’s truly important and I’ve learnt that the most important milestone we’ve hit is building the team and the most important resource we have is our people. I know it’s a cliche, but it’s completely true.

I’ve come to the realization that if we had to cut back on our rent or our film gear or the computers we use or the services we pay for - we’d figure it out. But if I lost my team and it was back to just me - that would be a lot harder to swallow. That’s why I feel it very important to talk about the amazing people that make up BiteSite.

Usually articles, blog posts, and news items center around people starting at BiteSite or moving on to their next opportunity which causes a lack of celebration for the people who do an amazing job day in and day out and stay with the team. So with that, today, I’d like to celebrate Tim Clark.

The other day I opened up LinkedIn on my phone and this came up

3 years at BiteSite makes Tim one of our longest-running employees and is definitely the most senior employee that’s still with us today.

Tim started out when I needed a motion graphic designer. I realized that my motion graphic skills were quite limited and I needed someone who could pull off some of the requests we were getting. So I put out a job posting for a motion graphic designer who could also be an all around filmmaker. I had a couple of great applicants, but Tim last minute submitted a video application. I was already impressed the effort he put in, but then was even happier to see he had the skills we needed. Today, Tim is a all around filmmaker handling everything from location scouts, to shooting, to lighting, to sound mixing, to editing, to colour grading, to motion graphics, and more.

I hired Tim based on our initial interviews because of his attitude and skill set. But it’s what I have observed over the past 3 years that really makes Tim stand out above the rest.

In corporate video, or any video work for that matter, your work can be incredibly unpredictable. You may show up to a shoot that you planned for 3 hours and end up staying for 6. You may show up to a shoot at 9am and not leave until midnight. Sometimes clients change their minds on the day, sometimes logistics change, and sometimes you just want to get that shot that’ll blow everyone away. Not to mention the physicality involved in filming. Whatever the reason, it can be a very tough job. While we pride ourselves on process and mitigating these issues, you just can’t control everything.

When I was a one-man team, I could always take care of myself, but when working with others - you never know how it’s going to go. But Tim does his job every day without a single complaint. He understands what it takes to make great productions, he understands the unpredictability of it all, and he understands what it means to go above and beyond for the customer to give them something they’ll truly be happy with. He comes in with a positive attitude, never complains, and always gives it his best.

This may sound like a lot of employees or co-workers you know, but I tell you - when you’re factoring in the physicality of some of these long shoot days - it’s not always easy to keep that attitude up. But Tim does it every day he comes to work.

There are a lot of other amazing things I can say about Tim. His technical skills, when it comes to shooting, editing, grading, animating, and more, are incredible and his willingness to constantly improve always impresses me. But it is his attitude in the face of a tough job that has really made him stand out and what I appreciate most. He is a team player in every sense of the word and delivers truly amazing work.

Since hiring Tim, our video productions have been on a steady incline in scale and quality. When I look at the productions we do today compared to when we started - I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished. None of that would be possible without the skills, effort, and above all else, attitude that Tim Clark brings to BIteSite. Thank you, Tim, for being a part of our team.

Casey Li
CEO & Founder, BiteSite

Our first hire is moving on

business company

When I started BiteSite, I was really excited to see what I could do with the company. As a business owner, I found myself constantly looking for milestones that led me closer to running a 'real' business. I remember when I registered the business name, I remember when my friend got me a Freshbooks ( trial for my birthday, and I remember purchasing the domain. Each step along the way - I felt more legit.

But the ultimate was when I made my first hire.

Building the team was always a huge importance to me and still is. Even though it went against business sense, I was adamant about hiring an employee rather than a contractor. I wanted the sense that this person was really part of BiteSite and would help shape the company. That first hire was Ryan O'Connor.

I met Ryan at the University of Ottawa when I was teaching a Ruby on Rails course there. The first thing that struck me about Ryan was the way he helped others. Although becoming rarer these days, programmers can sometimes develop an ego and Ryan was the complete opposite. He clearly understood things better than others but never let that get in the way of helping someone out.

We were lucky to have Ryan say yes to working at BiteSite. He was taking a chance as the first employee of a new startup. But he did join us in 2015 and has been killing it ever since.

Ryan has brought so much to BiteSite. He brought strong development practices from automated tests to up-to-date frameworks, he helped create a welcoming mentoring atmosphere to new employees, he embraced our 20% Free Time Fridays and developed a lot of amazing stuff. On alone, he brought some stand-out features like e-Commerce, the Activity Feed, and real-time Task updates. He has become an incredibly strong developer in Ruby on Rails and React - but overall just an outstanding engineer, employee, and person.

The biggest thing an employer can ask for of his/her employees is trust - trust that they'll do the right thing, trust that they'll express themselves, trust that they'll do their best - and with Ryan, we had that in spades.

Today is Ryan's last day at BiteSite and it was amazing to have the chance to work alongside such a great individual. He starts his next adventure at one of our former clients, Splice ( I know he'll do amazing things there and wherever he ends up in life.

Thank you, Ryan, for all that you've done in helping me realize my dreams.

Casey Li
CEO & Founder, BiteSite